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NEWS ADMIN

Mahamad Rodzi Abdul Ghani

DATE

06/11/2001

NEWS PROVIDER

Mahamad Rodzi Abdul Ghani

NEWS SOURCE

NULL

CATEGORY

HEADLINE

DRB-HICOM hopes to clinch US$180m Bangla rail proj
05 November 2001 (Business Times) - DRB-HICOM Bhd hopes to clinch theUS$180 million (US$1 = RM3.80) railway project in Bangladesh by this year,officials of the company said.The company will have an advantage over competing bids if the BangladeshGovernment opts to use financing arranged by the Malaysian company.“However, nothing is certain until we sign the contract,” said a DRB-HICOMofficial.The official said DRB-HICOM would “almost certainly” get the contract tobuild the 110km railway if Bangladesh Government chooses the financingpackage.“If it decides to use its own funding, then we have the same chance asother companies. We are doing our best to get the project, and theMalaysian Government is very helpful while the Bangladesh Government isvery receptive to Malaysia... it views us positively,” the spokesman said.It was reported in July that the local automotive and transport giant wasclose to landing its maiden rail development project abroad and is in theprocess of finalising details of the project.“It is likely to be joint-development involving DRB-HICOM and someBangladesh partners.“This is the normal practice for infrastructure projects in the country,”a DRB-HICOM official had told Business Times.When contacted last Friday, the official said that the company is waitingfor indication from the Bangladesh Government. “Hopefully, it willannounce the winners by this year.”DRB-HICOM’s participation in railway development became more evident afterthe Government announced earlier this year that a RM12 billion projectwill be undertaken to double-track the entire peninsula’s rail network.The company has come to be seen as a front-runner to play a key role.The project is divided into two packages and is being offered to companiesfrom India and China on a barter deal basis involving payment in palm oilfor the work contracted.The northern stretch has been awarded to India, while the southern grid isto be developed by Chinese firms.Apart from having preliminary talks with India’s Ircon International Ltdto offer its services for the northern stretch of the rail project,DRB-HICOM recently confirmed its participation as a sub-contractor for thelink between Seremban and Johor Baru.DRB-HICOM will work with head contractor — China Railway, for the RM6billion double-track rail link.DRB-HICOM is also involved in the RM4.2 billion construction of the 170kmdouble-tracked Rawang-Ipoh stretch, which will be completed by June 2004.Its share is said to be worth RM2.6 billion, with work on the first phaseprogressing as scheduled.